JONES IN THE FAST LANE, a hit from Sierra released in 1991 for MS-DOS where you are to get enrolled in school, pay rent and buy material necessities.

This game has some personal history as a friend and I installed it onto computers in our classroom at high school. We were granted access to the classroom between classes, but installing this game resulted in a lockout for everyone. Not a popular decision. On the other hand, this post might not have been written if it wasn’t for that event. Anyway, here is how you can install this old 90s game on a modern computer.

Install DOSBox for linux

On a debian or ubuntu based system, use the apt package manager to install DOSBox, an x86 emulator.

sudo apt install dosbox

DOSBox can be installed on all operating systems, so if you are running some other OS, go to dosbox.com and find your download link. When you have installed dosbox, you can fire it up at lightning speed.

DOSBox v0.74

There are a couple of things you need to do in order transfer games and files between your operating system and the emulated one. Make a folder, for example /home/hoyd/dosprogs and mount it using the DOSBox command mount DRIVE PATH

mount c ~/dosprogs

As a Norwegian user with a Norwegian keyboard layout, I used the command keyb no to set the correct layout inside DOSBox. In order for these two commands to be run automatically upon DOSBox startup, they can be added to the [autoexec] section at the end of your dosbox.conf file, like this:

Download Jones in the Fast Lane

JONES IN THE FAST LANE is an old abandoned game and can therefore be freely downloaded. Once you have downloaded this 1MB sized game (yes, games used to be small like that), place it into the folder.

Run INSTALL.EXE and choose soundblaster as the sound card of choice.

INSTALL.EXE

Now, you can launch JONES IN THE FAST LANE by going inside the emulated C:\ DOS drive with the command c: and the cd into the game directory and run JONES.BAT

DOSBox prompt
Startup screen in JONES IN THE FAST LANE

Tips and tricks with DOSBox

  • Switch between windows mode and fullscreen with ALT+ENTER
  • Toggle mouse between DOSBox and your operating system with CTRL+F10
  • If you have placed files in the DOSBox mounted folder while DOSBox is running, you will need to restart DOSBox for the files to appear.